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Natimuk Lake design review

Natimuk Lake. File photo.

Natimuk Lake. File photo.

Construction of an unauthorised weir at Natimuk Lake could still go ahead with a modified design after a Parks Victoria review.
Natimuk Lake Foreshore Committee began building a weir and embankment on land outside its legal authority and without approval from Parks Victoria in 2016.
Works were subsequently halted until an assessment of potential environmental effects of the structure could be completed.
Parks Victoria said the lake formed part of the nationally significant Natimuk-Douglas saline wetland system, with environmental, cultural, recreational, tourism and community values that needed to be protected.
While Parks Victoria’s assessment found the new weir might have some flow-on impact to the area around the lake and the broader wetland system, it was confident they could be controlled with a modified design.
Plans are to adopt a design that allows the weir’s height to be adjusted to different water levels.
Regional director Sally Lewis said Parks Victoria would take over management of the project, as it was not on land managed by Natimuk Lake Foreshore Committee.
She said the project still required legal, safety, environmental, cultural heritage, and regulatory checks, as well as a cost assessment.
She said support for the project would be required from traditional owners; the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning; Horsham City Rural Council; and Wimmera Catchment Management Authority.
“Parks Victoria has a responsibility to protect more than four-million hectares of public land, and to ensure any construction that takes place there is undertaken in an environmentally responsible manner,” she said.
“While this has been a complex matter to resolve, there is now an evidence-based environmental impact assessment from which we can explore construction of a weir with a modified design, subject to approvals.
“Following a full and frank meeting with the Natimuk Lake Foreshore Committee, we’ve committed to working together to progress the legal, safety, environmental, cultural heritage, and regulatory checks on this project.”
The committee’s term expired on June 7, and Parks Victoria said it would meet with the incoming committee to discuss these matters.
A plan for the operation of the weir at various heights will be developed in consultation with the new committee, agency partners and the community.
Wimmera Catchment Management Authority commissioned environmental impact assessment of the weir.

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Posted on Jun 19 2019

Posted by on Jun 19 2019. Filed under Environment. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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